But Mary Karr is coming to St. Louis this week. Thursday night she will be giving a talk at the St. Louis County Library Headquarters. The doors open at 6, but people start lining up early to ensure a spot.
Her first two memoirs, The Liars Club and Cherry covered her childhood and her teenage years. Lit is my favorite--it covers her unraveling as an alcoholic and a mother... and her finding her way back.
I've spent years savoring and reveling in memoirs. Make Me Into Zeus' Daughter. All Over But the Shoutin'. Stolen Lives. These are books that sit on a sacred spot on my shelves. But I also have favorite books on the art of writing.
On Writing by Stephen King. Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. Now Mary Karr has come out with a book on writing memoir.
I've written a memoir that is thinly disguised as a novel. (The manuscript is with an editor who is probably trying to figure out a way to disguise her lack of interest in it.) Writing gives me great joy. Memoir is how I untangle my life. And writing about the writing of memoir?
That's just gravy.
In case you can't make it, or in case you'd like a double helping of Mary Karr, here is a link to a conversation with her. (It's short. A little over 10 minutes long.)
What is YOUR favorite memoir? Have you written memoir pieces before? Do you have any advice for those who might be just dipping their toes into memoir writing?